The Institute for the Study of International Expositions (ISIE) Lecture Series
3-4 p.m. MT / 6-7 p.m. ET
Between May and October 1893, Chicago’s Jackson Park hosted 27 million tourists to the World’s Columbian Exposition, an event that brought the entire world together within a 600-acre park. The intentionally ephemeral Fair, with its over 200 buildings supported by a network of cutting-edge infrastructure, seemed too immense to materially disappear; yet it did. This talk draws from an archaeological and archival project focusing on the White City and Midway Plaisance of the 1893 Chicago Fair, which revealed the robust archaeological signature of its extensive sanitary infrastructure, the plaster remains of the Fair’s Ohio State Building, and bits of mundane domestic items that allow us to understand how the material destruction of the Fair was harnessed to further its ideological messages. A look at results from excavations at the 1892 Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Charnley House provides a contemporaneous domestic site to see how these messages were consumed at home. Rebecca S. Graff is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Lake Forest College and author of Disposing of Modernity: The Archaeology of Garbage and Consumerism During Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair (University Press of Florida, 2020).
Registration is required:
About the Speaker
Rebecca S. Graff is associate professor of anthropology at Lake Forest College and author of Disposing of Modernity: The Archaeology of Garbage and Consumerism During Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair (University Press of Florida, 2020).
- College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture
- Institute for the Study of International Expositions
The Institute for the Study of International Expositions is a new global interdisciplinary network of researchers interested in the design, promotion, reception and consequence of the world’s fairs and expositions held since 1851. Though rooted in the history of architecture, science, diplomacy, art and technology, our members hail from many disciplines and we welcome the participation of all those interested in exploring the many intersecting aspects of international expositions. Our first major event, the online symposium International Expositions: Looking to the Past, Seeing the Future, held this past March, was attended by over 75 people from more than 15 countries.This event served as a wonderful launching pad.
Visit the ISIE website for a series of new initiatives currently in the works, including an upcoming publication from the symposium, evolving the ISIE website into a valuable networking and disseminating tool for those involved in researching and planning international expositions, and the speaker series.